Monday, March 30, 2009

For your viewing pleasure...

... I've got some time to occupy, and some music to listen to, so here are some photos for you to enjoy!

We had a fun field trip to see a three-man show of The Emperor's New Clothes. The actor actually came out in his boxers with a fake rubber butt and neon-orange bandaids over his nipples. Anyway, it was so hot in there, my kids were exhausted by the end of it... so here they are, pretending to sleep:

I mentioned the Mongolian Cultural Village in the last blog (I think)... Well we had as much fun in the 3 hours getting there as we did in the 15 minutes of actually being there!

A sign we found in some special Korean monument area:

Pretty sure #2 is "No Yawning." #4 is definitely "Do Not Take A Chipmunk's Temperature Rectally." and #7 could only mean "Do Not Burn Jim and Huck's Raft."

The quintessential Mongolian warrior:

Apparently dinosaurs were a huge problem for the Mongolians...

I can totally see why.

They also had to deal with impaled wolves attacking their sheep:

They had about 8 of these typical Mongolian huts, or gels, set up. They were all the same. Here's one:

And here's the mobile version:

At the end of this trip, all I really wanted was a good coffee can...

I also went to Everland yesterday. If you've been with this blog from the very beginning, you'll remember that in my first post, I wrote about how absolutely thrilled I was to be living so close to Korea's largest amusement park. Well, 8 months in, I finally made it! AND IT WAS AWESOME!

Anyways, here are some highlights from that adventure:

Those familiar with drug-slang will appreciate this sign. It certainly cracked me up! (Disclaimer: I do not engage in recreational drug use!)

And those familiar with WICHITA will LOVE that this exists here:

Finally, those who loved Elvis when he was in his look-like-an-Asian phase, this one's for you:

Apparently, it's ok to feed the monkeys here:

Also, their monkeys are trained electricians:

They teach you all kinds of fun facts about monkeys at Everland:

But my favorite part was the fantastic "photo spot" they had set up in front of their wooden coaster (steepest one in the world, in fact!). They even told you where to place your feet!

Really classic picture, eh? Captures the moment! :)

I hope you enjoyed this photo tour... Now I can slack for a month! :)

Love you all!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Happy Spring!

It's officially spring, and Wichita's getting hit with a snow/ice storm right now. And Korea got cold. I went from wearing a coat every day to sleeping with the window open, back to wearing a coat every day! Make up your mind, Nature!

I'm almost at 8 months in Korea now, which is a little unnerving. I thought for sure by this point in my stay I'd have everything figured out - what I was doing with my life, what comes next, etc etc. But it seems that my feelings on these subjects keep changing with work-stress, missing family, having fun out here, wanting to travel more... So I still have no idea. Luckily I've got a few more months to decide!

Because my time here is (or could be, maybe) running short, my friend Catherine and I decided to live every weekend here like it's our last. We've gone on ferry rides, explored caves, been to a Mongolian village, and next weekend I'll be out catching (and eating!) fresh snow crabs! It's been a blast!

We have a week vacation at the end of July and I've decided (yay! I made at least one decision!) that I will be spending it lounging alone on a secluded beach in Bali. All the research I've done has led me to believe I may not be returning from that Paradise, hahaha... it's so beautiful!

The kids at school are great. Kindergarten is harder this year, so everyone's stressed, but they're figuring out our new rhythm... Elementary is awesome, the kids are so smart. Plus they love me. One girl wrote an essay about how great Emily Teacher is, because "she's funny, but when the class needs to be serious, she makes us serious, and she always explains everything carefully until we understand." What better compliment can a teacher ask for!?!?

That's all I've got, for now. I just wanted to get a bit of an update on here, since the blog was getting stale... I'll post again when something exciting happens, hahaha.

Love you all!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My Brilliant New Students

I haven't blogged in a while. Work has been extremely stressful with the class changes and schedule changes... I sunk into a funk for a minute or two, but I think I'm pulling through... Expect multiple updates in the near future :)

I have new students. I wasn't excited about it, but they're amazing. I now teach the two highest levels at LCI. These kids are so smart, it blows my mind. Now, instead of teaching my afternoon classes about the months of the year and how to spell "donkey," I'm teaching voice and vivid details and declarative and interrogatory sentences and LOVING IT!

Today, in my afternoon class, we were discussing the nature of friendship, and how it can take many forms. We had also discussed poetry, and different kinds of poems. I decided to give them 5-7 minutes to write at least a 12-line poem, in any form, about friendship. The results were astounding. I decided I had to share them with all of you...

The following are excerpts from poems about friendship written in under 7 minutes by 10-11 year olds (in their second language):

"She brags until I say
'What a show off;
You brag too much
Just say the word you need
to say.'
Just don't have a mouth full of brags.
But remember this word
in case of something:
'You are my friend, my best friend...'"

Friend is
who worry
and sad
and happy
with me.

Friend is
person that
know each
others' mind

Friend can't
change with
a jewelry
or a treasure.

This one I just had to take a photo of - it was too awesome:

And finally, from my smart-ass genius in the class (with whom I can have lengthy discussions about all things Harry Potter):

"Dragon Friendship"
A dragon sees another
They really like each other
they have some fun
they become dumb
but they always stick together

Together they fly
They always float by
and burn up some grass
eat up some lambs

Together they go
to get a nacho
but they always stick together.

Aren't you blown away too?!?! I'm really looking forward to getting more and more out of them. My head supervisor was also extremely impressed, and wants to post them on the lobby display board!! All this because I needed to kill a couple minutes! :)

That's all I've got for today - I need to finish watching the first episode of this latest season of Grey's Anatomy :)

But first - check out this cool effect my camera does: I can make the moon sparkle!

And we had a b-day yesterday in Kindergarten... Here is my class, all big and old as a 7-2 class now. And that's Philip in the middle, top row. You'll hear lots more about him soon. Philip, the cause of my tension headache...

Love you all!!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Read Jordan's Blog.

I've been extremely busy, so I haven't posted about my new classes yet, but Jordan has an awesome post about our Valentine's Day relaxation. So if you're dying for some Korea updates, look to the right and click on "Jordan's Blog."

Love you all!